When I travel overseas from Saranda I almost always fly out of Athens because they have incredibly cheap flights to Asia and elsewhere in Europe. There’s not a lot of practical information about travelling from Athens to Saranda or travelling from Saranda to Athens so I decided to put this handy guide together to make it a bit clearer. It’s an easy trip once you know when and where the bus comes and goes from!
Athens to Saranda bus
Getting your ticket in Athens
It’s advised that you get the ticket before your trip, either earlier that day or the day before. I have gotten a ticket as late as the late afternoon but if you’re travelling in summer the bus might become busy so get your ticket asap. You will need to go to the office called ‘Maksa Travel’ which is near the Metaxourghio Metro station (Μεταξουργείο in Greek). This is also where the bus goes from. The ticket price is €25.
The bus leaves Athens 2x a day, one in the morning (8 am) and one at night (8.30pm). Make sure you double-check the time as sometimes they can change.
There are other agencies where you can get your ticket from but I am just recommending the one way I always get mine from as I don’t know the reliability of the other companies.
Saranda to Athens
Getting your ticket in Saranda
Getting your ticket is easy, you just need to go to the ticket office ‘Butrinti Travel’, it’s right next to Dolphin Hostel. This is also where the bus will leave. There is a bright red football cafe opposite!
The bus leaves 2x a day, one in the morning, 6.30am and 6.30pm. Make sure you double-check the time as sometimes they can change.
Ticket price is €25 or you can pay in Lek.
The bus ride
The ride can take anywhere from 9 hours to 11 hours. It really depends on the driver and how long the border takes. I have been stuck on the border in a big queue for 2 hours once. The bus ride is nothing special but it’s not that bad either. They stop every couple of hours for a toilet break/ food break. Usually, at the border, you will have to take your hand luggage with you, put it on a table and they will inspect it. I have also been on a trip where I didn’t even leave the bus! It’s the Balkans so you never know!
The bus is usually in good condition. I have had air-conditioning and a comfortable seat. There’s no wifi but you will find on a lot of Balkan buses that there will never be, even if they promote it.
I hope that this post made your trip a little clearer on where to get tickets etc. I have been getting a lot of questions about this exact trip! If you have any further questions then make sure you comment below so I can answer them for you.
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